Community Feed

  • DVBIA in the News

    Jun 11, 2018

    The Downtown Vancouver BIA is regularly featured in the news, advocating on behalf of our member businesses and showcasing initiatives that help bring our forward-thinking vision for downtown Vancouver to life.

    Here’s where we featured in the month of May 2018.

    Newswire – The DVBIA officially supports supervised consumption sites in the Downtown core

    Vancouver Sun – Downtown Vancouver newspaper boxes flipping to ‘Little Free Libraries’

    The Peak – SFU students collaborate on a miniature library project

    Vancouver Sun -  DVBIA supports CCTV on Granville

    The Georgia Straight– DVBIA’s transformed Alley Oop holds a free pop-up party

    CBC – The DVBIA supports patios bars on Granville Street

    Linda Steele – Charles Gauthier speaks about the patios coming to Granville

    City of Vancouver – Improvements to safety on Granville

    Globe and Mail – DVBIA’s CEO, speaks about the use of CCTV and its contribution to safety

    CBC – DVBIA’s CEO, Charles Gauthier states that a larger patio culture will put more eyes on Granville and increase safety

    Daily Hive – The DVBIA’s free pop-up libraries

    Vancouver Sun – From free newspapers to Little Free Libraries

    Richmond News – Charles Gauthier speaks about the DVBIA’s little libraries

    Global BC – DVBIA teams together with SFU for the launch of the ‘Little Free Libraries’

    The Star - Charles Gauthier speaks about the issues facing Granville and the use of CCTV

    News 1130 – The DVBIA announces official support of supervised consumption sites in the downtown core

    BIV – Charles Gauthier speaks about Vancouver’s cruise ship industry

    Global BC – The DVBIA’s CEO speaks about the city’s ban on single-use items

    News1130 – Charles Gauthier comments on public washrooms in the city




  • Making Granville safer and more welcoming

    Jun 08, 2018

    A new code of conduct that has been introduced involves year-long and lifetime bans for those involved in the violent behaviour in the Granville district. Bar Watch's Chair, Curtis Robinson rolled out the parameters of the new code of conduct at the Republic Night Club. Fighting, verbal abuse, harassment, unwanted physical contact, drink tampering, theft or bringing concealed liquor into any of Bar Watch’s venues will result in a year-long ban. Those who bring weapons into venues will be barred for life.

    “If you get charged for a violent offence on Granville Street or elsewhere in Vancouver, particularly the Granville strip and you’re found to be in possession of a knife or a weapon, you have forfeited your right to enter a Bar Watch bar, nightclub, pub or any venue under our umbrella for life,” Robinson said.

    This rule applies to both the interior and exterior of Bar Watch properties. If a person leaves an establishment and starts a fight or engages in dangerous behaviour elsewhere on Granville, the same bans will apply. Robinson explained that his group will use court records to cross reference the identities and convictions in each case. 

    30 establishments fall under the Bar Watch code, predominantly along Granville Street, Gastown and Yaletown.

    Outside of introducing the code of conduct, Robinson doubled down on other issues that could help mitigate violence and disorder on Granville: extended transit hours on weekends, allowing ride-sharing companies such as Lyft and Uber and increasing fighting fines to $1,000.

    “I worked down here for years and it was nightmare at 3:30 in the morning trying to get people to move along,” Robinson said.

    VPD statistics show the Granville Street and Gastown entertainment districts saw 590 reported fights in 2017. VPD Staff Sgt. Damien said between 13 and 15 officers are assigned to the Granville strip on weekends during the summer. He told council earlier this month the number of bylaw tickets written for fighting on the Granville strip has jumped annually since 2014 — 15 at that point, compared to 87 last year.

    Information from Vancouver Courier – read the full article here

  • Meeting with the Deputy Attorney General

    Jun 08, 2018

    Last week, the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association had the opportunity to have another meeting with the Deputy Attorney General, Richard Fyfe, and other senior provincial government officials from various departments. In this meeting with Mr. Fyfe, we shared survey results and member anecdotes to convey the thoughts and concerns of our member businesses on the subject of the safety issues in the downtown core.

    After our most recent meeting with the Deputy Attorney General, we feel optimistic that our concerns, and those of our members, were taken seriously. Through productive conversations like this, we can continue to advocate for our retail members and help make downtown Vancouver safer than ever. We continuously consult our retail members on the types of changes and solutions that they believe are required to address property crime, improve general working conditions for retail staff and increase the overall safety of the general public.

  • Theft from Auto

    Jun 08, 2018

    The Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association (DVBIA) is reminding downtown businesses, employees and residents to be mindful of not leaving anything visible in an unattended car. This comes after the Vancouver Police Department (VPD) released statistics demonstrating that thefts from auto (TFAs) had increased by almost 40 per cent from 2017 to 2018.

    The Vancouver Police Department (VPD) has noted that the majority of TFAs can be avoided simply by drivers following a few simple safety tips, including keeping your car clean and free of any personal possessions. Most drivers might be vigilant about not leaving valuables like laptops or shopping bags in plain sight, but won’t think twice about leaving small, everyday items like cellphone chargers, sunglasses or spare change.

    This problem is pervasive throughout all regions of Metro Vancouver. To help address this issue in the downtown core, the DVBIA is working with parking stakeholders within our district to help make sure there is an increased awareness about keeping your car completely free of any items that may tempt thieves.

    The DVBIA is also working closely with the VPD as well as the downtown branches of the Community Policing Centres (CPC) to help share information about how to lower your risk of a TFA. Last year alone the CPC distributed over 113,500 theft from auto brochures in the downtown core to advise drivers of the risks associate with leaving valuables in their cars. They also work one-on-one with automobile users to advise them of the steps they are— or are not— taking to reduce auto crime, as well as patrol the TFA hot-spots on foot and bike.

    Among the VPD’s top tips for preventing theft from auto are to leave your car completely clear of any personal items, disengage your trunk latch so your trunk cannot be opened from inside the car, and to be aware of your surroundings and report any suspicious people to police. They also recommend not making multiple trips back and forth to your car when out shopping, as it may alert thieves that you are placing valuables in your car.

  • AGM is this week!

    Jun 08, 2018

    AGM is this week!

    Please join us at our 2018 Annual General Meeting and help us toast the best of Downtown Vancouver. This year’s event will be held at the beautiful Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel. We’ll be in the Emerald Ballroom, which looks out onto Canada Place, the Convention Centre, and downtown Vancouver’s stunning waterfront landscape.

    Date: Thursday, June 14, 2018

    Time: Registration at 3:30 pm, Program 4:00 – 6:00 pm 

    Location: Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel 
    1038 Canada Place Way, Emerald Ballroom, 3rd floor

     This event is free to DVBIA members, but requires pre-registration. Please note, membership must be current within a year. 

    Following the AGM business, we will recognize our Downtown Appreciation Award winners. This year’s honourees include Façade Fest, Smak, the Vancouver Foundation, Malte Kluetz of the Christmas Market, and the late Bing Thom. 

    Enjoy cocktails, canapés, and the amazing company of your downtown colleagues at our 2018 AGM. We hope to see you there. 

    Register at

    Need to activate or are unsure if your membership is current? Please email

  • TransLink Ten Year Vision

    Jun 08, 2018

    The DVBIA is supportive of the second phase of the ten year vision for the regional transportation network. Expanded transit services and infrastructure will meet existing and future transit demands, while also contributing to the economic and environmental sustainability of our region.

    Improvements to the regional transit network directly impact the vitality of the downtown core. A strong downtown is one that is easily accessed by a variety of efficient and convenient modes of transportation. Transit networks also relieve traffic congestion
    and alleviate parking challenges, thereby improving the experience of visiting downtown
    and elsewhere.

    The DVBIA appreciates that the cost of transit improvements are shared among all levels of government. The local contribution is comprised of a good mix of funding sources, including a 3 per cent increase to the parking sales tax, which we find to be fair and reasonable.

    We thank Translink for the consultation opportunities and look forward to the implementation of the 10-year vision.

    For more information on Translink’s 10-year vision, please visit their website

  • Zero Waste 2040 Strategy

    Jun 08, 2018

    Vancouver is set to become the first city in the world to approve a zero-waste strategic plan with an early action to reduce single-use bags, cups, take-out containers, utensils and straws.

    The city will also be the first to ban plastic straws and polystyrene foam cups and take-out containers.

    After council heard from over 20 speakers, including DVBIA CEO Charles Gauthier, they voted to approve a flexible bylaw that will see the city work closely with small businesses to achieve a targeted reduction in the use of plastic bags and cups. If target reduction rates are not achieved by 2021, the COV will take further action by enacting a full ban on single-use plastic bags and cups.

    The City is committed to working with small businesses to ensure that these policies are not only successful in reducing waste but also in maintaining or enhancing the local economy.

    Council also voted to bring in a distribution ban on straws and polystyrene on June 1, 2019 – six months earlier than initially proposed – and to provide additional funding for outreach and education to support small businesses as they make the transition to using sustainable packaging materials.

    “Today’s approval of the Zero Waste 2040 Strategy is a big step forward to make Vancouver the world’s greenest city and a global leader in zero waste,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “Cities around the world recognize the detrimental impacts of plastic waste on our environment and are taking bold steps to cut down or eliminate waste through bans and innovative reusable programs. In Vancouver, we’re hearing strong support from local businesses, environmental groups and the general public, and I’m confident that this comprehensive strategy will help us become a clean, zero-waste city."

     Below are some highlights from the Zero Waste 2040 strategy:

    • Intro a ban on distribution of cups and plastic/paper shopping bags. Business can chose from:
      • No distribution of disposable cups or plastic/paper bags.
      • Disposable cups or plastic/paper bags cannot be distributed for free.
      • Other mechanisms that will be proposed and finalized through consultation.
      • If the reduction plans do not lead to the City reaching the target reduction rate by 2021, City Council will enact a full distribution ban on single-use bags and cups.
    • Require disposable utensils to be given out if customers ask for them.
    • Issues an RFEOI for a ‘Made in Vancouver’ single-use item solutions such as a city mug share program and reusable straws.
    • All compostable packaging (e.g. bags, cups and containers) distributed by businesses must be approved compostable, which means that it has been tested and approved at a local compost facility.
    • Explore options to recover the costs of collecting disposable cups in public waste bins and as litter from the business that generate this waste.
  • Granville Spotlight – The Compound

    Jun 08, 2018

    From dishwasher to Sous Chef and now co-owner of The Compound, we catch up with Joe Palmer as he tells us all about the restaurant that caters to everyone. 


    First off, tell us a bit about yourself and how you got started in the restaurant industry. 
    I've been working in restaurants since I was 16 as a dishwasher for a local brewpub in my hometown of Mission. Once high school was over, I moved to Calgary for about 10 years moving up through the kitchen to Sous Chef and then I made a switch to the Front of House and started serving, eventually moving into bartending and managing. I got the opportunity to move back to Vancouver to open a new restaurant, and now here I am.

    Now tell us about your business – what is The Compound and what sets it apart?

    The Compound is an all-inclusive restaurant. We have food for all eating choices from vegan to gluten-free and also meat eaters. Our food is what stands us apart from anyone on Granville Street and we have an amazing drink list to complement our menu.

    Why did you choose to locate on Granville Street?
    We chose this location because we love the layout and the look of it to begin with. That is why we didn't need to put much into it to reopen after the Fish Shack closed. I love hosting and planning events as well so we have two separated areas where we can hold events and parties whenever we want.

    The Compound is one of the most recent additions to Granville Street  – what has been the response from customers so far? Is there anything else you’d like people know about The Compound? 
    Response from the guests has been amazing. Our food definitely stands apart from everything else here and there hasn't been an unsatisfied eater! Something I want everyone to know is that we are open and would love to meet you all!

    The Compound is located at 1026 Granville St and co-owned by Dino Koumbis, Joe Palmer and Brad Stowe, three friends who decided to jump into this venture together.

    For more information about The Compound visit


  • Perch Season is Back!

    Jun 08, 2018

    The Perch program is back. From workout Wednesdays to art Thursdays, we have a lot planned for you throughout the Summer.

    What is the Perch?

    • The Perch is a series of pop-up publicly accessible plazas that set up on weekends from June to October. The spaces range from POPs (Privately Owned Public Spaces) to park and streets.
    • The Perch is for everyone. Come bring lunch from a local business, a book for some quiet reading or your friends for a catch-up.

    Lot 19 and Cathedral Square

    • Two Perches have regular activities Monday-Friday
    • They are the ‘Perch at Lot 19’ (located on Hastings West and Hornby) and Cathedral Square Park (Dunsmuir and Richards Streets).
    • These Perches have themed days – Art Day, Puzzle Day, Games Day, Busker Day, and Fitness Day - plus special events.

      For more Info, visit 

    Highlights this Season

    • The ever-popular Busker Days!

      Enjoy beautiful acoustic music with your lunch on Thursdays at Lot 19, Fridays at Cathedral Square, starting at 12pm. Featuring Jazz, Instrumental Guitar, ‘Nerd Rock’ and much more.

    • Lot 19 Street Vendor Collective.

      On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, this pilot project aims to create more accessible low-barrier economic opportunities for community members. Vending times will vary.

    • Gardening and Beekeeping workshops.

      Cathedral Square park is hosting Gardening and Beekeeping workshops run by Hives for Humanity. These lessons are available to all, but do wear closed-toe shoes and bring gloves if you have them. Beekeeping lessons are 12pm on the last Thursday of the month and Gardening lessons are 12pm on the first Thursday of the month.

    • Fung Loy Kok Taoist Tai Chi

    Fung Loy Kok Taoist Tai Chi will be hosting monthly Tai Chi classes, starting June 15 at Lot 19 and June 20 at Cathedral Square.

    For more information about the Perch program, including locations, visit 


  • AGM 2018

    May 06, 2018

    Please join us at our 2018 Annual General Meeting and help us toast the best of Downtown Vancouver. This year’s event will be held at the beautiful Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel. We’ll be in the Emerald Ballroom, which looks out onto Canada Place, the Convention Centre, and downtown Vancouver’s stunning waterfront landscape. There will be photo opportunities at every turn, plus some fun surprises that are sure to delight!

    Date: Thursday, June 14, 2018

    Time: Registration at 3:30 pm, Program 4:00 – 6:00 pm

    Location: Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel
    1038 Canada Place Way, Emerald Ballroom, 3rd floor

    This event is free to DVBIA members, but requires pre-registration. Please note, membership must be current within a year.

    Following the AGM business, we will recognize our Downtown Appreciation Award winners. This year’s honourees include Façade Fest, Smak, the Vancouver Foundation, Malte Kluetz of the Christmas Market, and the late Bing Thom.

    Enjoy cocktails, canapés, and the amazing company of your downtown colleagues at our 2018 AGM. We hope to see you there.

    This event is now sold out. 

    Need to activate or are unsure if your membership is current? Please email

  • New Office Towers

    May 06, 2018

    By the year 2023, Downtown Vancouver Central Business District (DVBIA) area will be adding 9 new office towers. The combination of all upcoming towers will provide additional 3,355,226 sq. ft. of officespace in the downtown BIA boundary.

    Building Name: 1133 Melville
    Developer: Oxford Properties
    Total Gross Floor Area: 620,389 sq. ft.
    #Floors: 36
    Expected Completion Date: Unknown
    Status (proposed, approved): Approved
    - dailyhive
    - rezoningvancouver
    - skyscrapercentre

    Building Name: Burrard Place
    Developer: Reliance Properties
    Total Gross Floor Area: 150,000 sq. ft.
    #Floors: 13
    Expected Completion Date: 2020
    Status (proposed, approved): Approved
    - renx
    - urbanyvr

    Building Name: Bosa Waterfront Centre
    Developer: Bosa Development
    Total Gross Floor Area: 355,000 sq. ft.
    #Floors: 30
    Expected Completion Date: 2021
    Status (proposed, approved): Approved
    - thinkbosa
    - urbanyvr

    Building Name: Vancouver Centre II
    Developer: GWL Realty
    Total Gross Floor Area: 371,000 sq. ft.
    #Floors: 33
    Expected Completion Date: 2021
    Status (proposed, approved): Approved
    - dailyhive
    - vancouvercentre

    Building Name: 400 W. Georgia
    Developer: Westbank
    Total Gross Floor Area: 350,000 sq. ft.
    #Floors: 24
    Expected Completion Date: 2020
    Status (proposed, approved): Approved
    - westbankcorp
    - urbanyvr

    Building Name: 601 West Hastings

    Developer: PCI Developments
    Total Gross Floor Area: 220,000 sq. ft.
    #Floors: 25
    Expected Completion Date: 2021
    Status (proposed, approved): Approved
    - bharchitects
    - pci-group

    Building Name: 675 West Hastings
    Developer: Uptown / Musson Cattell
    Total Gross Floor Area: 158,837 sq. ft.
    #Floors: 28
    Expected Completion Date: Unknown
    Status (proposed, approved): In process
    - rezoningvancouver
    - dailyhive

    Building Name: The Post
    Developer: QuadReal
    Total Gross Floor Area:
    -13 million sq. ft. office.
    -35% to be occupied by Amazon.
    -220,000 sq. ft. retail.
    #Floors: 17
    Expected Completion Date: 2023
    Status (proposed, approved): Approved
    - quadreal

  • Granville Spotlight: Meinhardt

    May 04, 2018

    We chatted with the store manager of Granville Street’s Meinhardt to get the lowdown on what it’s like serving up delicious fresh food in the heart of the city. Hear about what’s next for the grocery chain and what their day-to-day looks like at Granville and Dunsmuir!

    1)  First off, tell us a bit about yourself. How long have you been with Meinhardt and how did you get started in the business?

    My name is Marissa and I am the Store Manager of the Pacific Centre Meinhardt; I have been with the company for the past 8 years. Even to this day, I’ll never forget the first time I stepped into the store.

    My very first impression of Meinhardt was the gorgeous cascade of white orchids on a very large vase covered by fresh florals, the beautiful pastry showcase, accompanied by an extensive salad selection that connects to the Deli and cheese array across from it. It’s what drew me farther into the store.

    I remember thinking to myself “I would love to be a part of this establishment”.

    Fast forward 4 years: one day as I was walking down the street, I encountered an ad that stated “Meinhardt is hiring”. I knew I had to be there, I applied immediately and the rest – is history.

    2)  Now tell us about your business. What is Meinhardt, and what is the key to its success?

    Meinhardt Fine Foods is a place where passionate people create culinary excellence, provide a compelling line of signature items and deliver it all in a fresh and exciting environment to “feed your curiosity”. Back in 1996, Linda Meinhardt founded our specialty food store and gained its success and reputation by filling the store shelves up with the most beautiful, unique and exclusive grocery items.

    Today, consumer’s dietary needs are continuously shifting. Our chefs at Meinhardt strive to keep up with the health trends and are constantly adapting with the everchanging needs. The ingredients we use in our food are local, sustainable, and ethically sourced; we believe in the “Think globally, act locally” mindset. To add to that, most of our food items are made fresh from scratch and with love in our kitchen (yes, even the salad dressing!).

    3)  Why did you choose to locate on downtown Granville Street?

    We made the decision to open a location at Pacific Centre in 2012 because we wanted to be in the heart of Vancouver. Without a doubt, Vancouver is one of Canada’s fastest growing cities. We want to be able to grow together with Vancouver.

    We saw that there was a gap in the marketplace where people are looking for convenient, fresh, on-the-go selections. We have been the go-to destination for locals to source premium grocery products typically not found elsewhere for the past two decades for our South Granville neighbourhood. We wanted to be able to bring that to downtown as well.

    4)  What’s next for your business? Any plans for changes or expansion?

    Upcoming in June 2018, we will be opening our third location at Ambleside Beach! As some of you may be able to tell, each of our stores cater to a very different demographic. While our South Granville location caters to families and Pacific Centre location caters to the working population, our beachside location will incorporate an upscale café concept. Our goal is to introduce a unique café and shopping experience in West Vancouver. This location will have 28 inside seats and 20 seats on our outdoor patio, a full-service barista coffee bar featuring a custom-designed premium coffee and loose teas menu, complemented by a wide selection of house made fresh-baked goods. Our Ambleside location will also feature an artisan ice cream bar with special flavours to match your seasonal needs.

    As for our Pacific Centre location, we’re looking to expand our catering offerings in the coming year. Our patio will be opened again for the warmer days in Vancouver for you to enjoy the sunshine!

    Moreover, we have begun implementing a new program where we prepare food tastings and samplings almost every weekday not only to introduce the products but also the owner and producer behind each brand. We believe in supporting local entrepreneurs and want to be able to bring our local brands closer to our community. You can find all of our food demonstrations on our Twitter @meinhardtfoods!

  • Celebrating Sustainability

    May 03, 2018

    The Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association is committed to helping downtown businesses have a positive social, economic, cultural and environmental impact on society. So much of what we do revolves around finding new ways to make the city more vibrant and liveable, but it’s not just limited to activities around economic development. With the bigger picture in mind, the DVBIA recently asked ourselves how we, as an organization, can help facilitate a robust and resilient community that’s focused on not only economic, but also social and environmental successes.

    With a renewed focus on sustainability goals, we began to seek out Vancouver’s leaders in sustainability, and we were pleasantly surprised with the results. We learned about amazing sustainable practices that festival organizers were utilizing. We saw local businesses using compostable materials that were game-changers for their environmental impact. We heard from building owners who had found inventive ways to reduce their carbon footprints. And through partnerships such as the ones we have with Bullfrog Energy, HUB cycling, and My Green Space, the DVBIA renewed our own commitment to making Vancouver’s downtown core even more environmentally friendly.

    The City of Vancouver has also set lofty goals when it comes to sustainability, including its “Greenest City Action Plan” which provides a great benchmark for how we can become global leaders. The plan outlines measurable and attainable targets, and represents a strategy for staying on the leading edge of urban sustainability and becoming the world’s greenest city by the year 2020. As part of this plan, the City recently announced a consultation process that will help to shape a new single-use item strategy. Single-use items currently cost Vancouver taxpayers about $2.5 million per year to collect from public waste bins and to clean up as litter in our parks, streets, and green spaces. Moving towards a system that will help address the environmental impact (not to mention the cost pressures) of these items is another step in the right direction toward becoming the greenest city.
    From the municipal to the corporate to the individual level, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to things we can do to help make Vancouver more sustainable. The important thing is just to find something that works for you, and to stick with it. The steps that we can all take together can do a lot more than just assuage our collective guilt about environmental issues; they can make a real, tangible impact on our environment.

  • DVBIA Does #BIABC2018

    May 01, 2018

    The BIABC + IDA Pacific Northwest Regional Conference was held in Kelowna in April. The theme of the conference was innovate & inspire and our DVBIA Placemaking Lead, Tara Gloster, attended to share our innovative and inspiring laneway learning guide based on our recent More Awesome Now laneway project.

    There was a lot to take away from the various sessions at the conference, which covered issues such as bike culture and bike sharing, as well as walkability and how people interact with the public realm. Other topics that were addressed included densification, retail strategies, safety and health issues in the changing climate and the key to successful partnerships, among others. The main takeaway was that incredibly successful, impactful and large scale initiatives can be achieved when everyone works together, including city departments, BIAs, businesses and the community. This isn’t brand new information, but it was reinforced in a meaningful way, and some successful partnership projects were highlighted to inspire attendees.

    Tara’s session— titled “Revitalizing Laneways: A toolkit for transforming public spaces”— was a full house with lots of engaging conversations and questions from those who attended. Some people in the room had done similar projects and wanted to learn how to build on these, while others hadn’t yet completed revitalization projects of this nature but were keen to learn how to implement something similar in their own area.

    Those who attended Tara’s session took away not only the physical laneway learning guide but also some creative inspiration and the tools and knowledge to revitalize innovative laneways in their city. Making the network of activated laneways worldwide – that is the dream.

    If you would like a digital copy of the learning guide please visit our website If you have any queries regarding the toolkit, you may contact Tara via


  • DOXA Film Festival returns

    May 01, 2018

    In an era of “fake news” and global uncertainty, the 2018 DOXA Documentary Film Festival comes to the rescue with a program of 93 films (shorts and features) that offer radical and transformative ideas through music, art, and the power of people working together to create and share solutions.

    DOXA Documentary Film Festival runs May 3 –13, 2018 in Vancouver BC. See the full program here:

  • Little Free Library

    May 01, 2018

    Next time you’re in a public plaza downtown, you might notice some new colourful additions. That’s because a Little Free Library program has officially launched, just in time for the summer Perch season!

    The Little Free Library program is an international non-profit with the goals of inspiring a love for reading, building community, and sparking creativity, which is already happening in our downtown core. Thanks to the help of SFU Contemporary Art students, eleven newspaper boxes that were headed to the scrap yard were redesigned with unique images that depict a love of reading in Vancouver. Carrying on with the sustainability theme, these “libraries” are a book exchange for lightly used books -with the policy of “Take a Book, Leave a Book”. With a constant turnaround of used books in the Library, there should be  a book for everyone!

    The eleven Little Free Libraries can be found on an interactive map, and they are accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    For more information on the Little Free Library program, including how to start your own, visit

  • Vancouver Design Week

    May 01, 2018

    May 7, 2018 will mark the return of Vancouver Design Week (VDW), a week-long celebration of world-class local design talent born from a wide variety of disciplines. Inspired by Vancouver’s most impactful designers, artists, architects, creators and spaces, VDW invites attendees to take part in thinking about design on a global and sustainable scale through a variety of city-wide workshops, events and activities.

    The celebration’s full schedule of events and showcases are to be nestled among some of the city’s most vibrant districts including Downtown, Gastown/Railtown, Lonsdale, Chinatown, Armoury and Mt. Pleasant and UBC. The official interdisciplinary design festival holds IMPACT as its central theme and will be held from May 7 to 13 at some of Vancouver’s most evolved and unique spaces, studios, firms and ateliers.

    From talks to tours, exhibitions to workshops to a variety of exciting parties, design from all disciplines will open its doors to conversations, installations and celebrations of all scales, uncovering the unique design ecosystems that shape, define and sustain our city. At VDW, design process, practice and perspectives are showcased through a wide range of independent and collaborative programming.

  • FREE Rooftop or balcony gardens

    Apr 07, 2018

    The Downtown Vancouver BIA wants to help your business become more sustainable. Through a partnership with local start-up MyGreenSpace we are offering a limited supply of garden kits and 1 hour workshops on how to use them.

    • Grow food for the office
    • Add greenery to your outdoor space
    • Improve air quality
    • Reduce rain run-off

    Kit includes:

    • Cedar planter (locally sourced, locally made) – floor or raised styles available
    • Soil and seeds (organic)
    • Free delivery
    • 1-hour workshop at your office lead by a My Green Space Founder (first 6 businesses to respond)
    • How to set up your garden
    • Into to the My Green Space support app


    • You are a DVBIA member business
    • Your business has outdoor space for a kit (patio, balcony, rooftop)

    Claim yours now - First come, first serve!
    Express your interest in a planter kit by e-mail to
    Include the name and address of your business in your initial e-mail.

  • Capture Photography Festival this month

    Apr 07, 2018

    Capture Photography Festival
    runs from April 3-29, and includes a lot of activations that will take place in the downtown Vancouver core.

    Launched in 2013, the annual not-for-profit Festival strives to nurture emerging talent, engage community, and spark public dialogue about photography as an art form and a vessel for communication.

    Each April, photography is presented at dozens of galleries and community spaces throughout Greater Vancouver as part of the Festival’s Selected and Open Exhibition Programs, alongside an extensive Public Art Program and an Events Program that spans tours, films, artist talks, and community events.

    There will be a free community “photowalk” to take place on Saturday April 28th from 1-3 with Street Dreams Magazine. Participants will follow a group of dancers from Arts Umbrella around the downtown core for the opportunity to photograph them.

    Additionally, there will be a year-long public art installation of the BC Hydro Dal Grauer Substation – “In the Belly of a Cat”.

  • Cherry Blossom Fest is back!

    Apr 07, 2018

    The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival non-profit society was founded in 2005 and led by a dedicated board of directors, supported by its launch partner, the Vancouver Board of Trade as a Spirit of Vancouver initiative. With their help, the first Festival was produced in 2006, and in 2007, formal recognition of the Festival’s objectives qualified it for charitable status.

    The Cherry Blossom Fest objectives included public education through seasonal, cherry themed, city wide viewing programs, musical performances, and fine art and craft exhibitions. The DVBIA is a proud sponsor of the Festival.

    Check out the calendar of events by visiting

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